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Teacher cleared of sex assault reveals his nightmare
dailymail.co.uk ^ | 5-15-11 | Katie Silver

Posted on 05/15/2011 11:51:00 AM PDT by rawhide

A PE teacher falsely accused of molesting a 12-year-old schoolgirl has spoken of his pain at telling his children he was going to be arrested.

Sean Lanigan was pulled out of a class in Fairfax, Virginia, and told he was going to be arrested for allegedly carrying out the offences.

In reality his 'crimes' had been invented and the schoolgirl bore a grudge against him.

Despite being cleared of all the offences, the teacher’s $125,000 legal fees still haven’t been repaid by the state and he is struggling to get his life back.

The young girl claimed that the teacher had taken him into the gym and said he was going to ‘treat her like a Queen’ and briefly groped her.

This line, it turns out is a lyric from one or her favourite music bands, the Ataris.

He had told his ‘victim’ off for being abusive on the school bus and the girl apparently told her friends: ‘Mr Lanigan’s a jerk. I’m going to make him pay.’

When it came to trial, the jury took only 47 minutes to decide he was not guilty. Such a short deliberation in a child sex abuse case is extremely rare.

They described it as an ‘easy decision’ since ‘there was no evidence.

(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; US: Virginia
KEYWORDS: centreville; cleared; fairfaxcounty; principle; school; sexual
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Man, this could happen to almost any guy! Some little twit makes an accusation like this and your life is ruined! This guy lost his job and his livelihood. And his reputation. And no matter that he was cleared of the charges, there will always be this cloud hanging over his head by some. He will never escape this accusation fully, even though it was compeltely false.
1 posted on 05/15/2011 11:51:04 AM PDT by rawhide
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To: rawhide

The same thing happened to a friend of mine. He was exonerated but the legal fees were terrible and the entire ordeal was extremely stressful. It can happen to anyone.


2 posted on 05/15/2011 11:54:07 AM PDT by Clintons Are White Trash (Lynn Stewart, Helen Thomas, Rosie ODonnell, Maureen Dowd, Medea Benjamin - The Axis of Ugly)
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To: All

The girl should be locked up untill she is 18.


3 posted on 05/15/2011 11:55:08 AM PDT by troy McClure
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To: rawhide

Child Protective Services in the state of Washington has a simple philosophy. If a child states that his parents are abusive he is telling the truth. If the child refuses to accuse his parents he has been intimidated, coerced or brainwashed by the parents. If the child accuses a CPS worker or school “counselor” of misdeeds they are liars.


4 posted on 05/15/2011 11:58:51 AM PDT by Scotsman will be Free (11C - Indirect fire, infantry - High angle hell - We will bring you, FIRE)
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To: rawhide

Once a man is falsely accused of rape, there is no getting away from the stigma, short of getting away, where no one knows about it, and that is impossible these days. The girl and her family should be made to pay every penny this has cost him, and a lot more.


5 posted on 05/15/2011 11:59:33 AM PDT by pallis
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To: troy McClure

I think that the girl’s parents should be responsible for his bills.


6 posted on 05/15/2011 12:00:09 PM PDT by Scotsman will be Free (11C - Indirect fire, infantry - High angle hell - We will bring you, FIRE)
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To: BufordP; fieldmarshaldj; Corin Stormhands

Fairfax County ping!


7 posted on 05/15/2011 12:00:39 PM PDT by rabscuttle385 (Live Free or Die)
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To: rawhide

There is no way to protect yourself from this type of charge.

Never being alone in a classroom or anywhere else with any child makes no difference. The lies can be spread and you have no defense.

The girl’s family should be made to pay the legal fees and she ought to spend a couple of years behind bars.


8 posted on 05/15/2011 12:01:36 PM PDT by Carley (We will not tire. We will not falter. We will not fail. W, 9/20/01)
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To: Scotsman will be Free

Yes, and for pain and suffering! I hope they a blanket insurance policy?


9 posted on 05/15/2011 12:02:36 PM PDT by rawhide
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To: rawhide
Why aren't the girl's parents being made to pay the bill? As parents we are directly responsible for the misconduct of our children.

Teaching just is not a job for men anymore.

10 posted on 05/15/2011 12:03:48 PM PDT by pnh102 (Regarding liberalism, always attribute to malice what you think can be explained by stupidity. - Me)
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To: rawhide

Frightening story. Although we must protect youngsters from adult sexual predators, there has to be some balance. The 12-year-old girl should have had her accusation better verified by the police before they moved on Mr. Lanigan. The concept that if a child (especially at that age) makes an allegation of sexual abuse by an adult, especially a teacher, it has to be taken at face value with scant investigation is absurd and can lead to this kind of tragedy for an innocent man. Like the jurors that quickly acquitted him, I too hope this man is someday able to ‘get his life back’. Even if he does, it will never be the same. All because some pouting 12-year-old girl decided to ‘make him pay’ for ‘speaking harshly’ to her. Insane - and very, very wrong.


11 posted on 05/15/2011 12:04:39 PM PDT by Jim Scott
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To: pallis

What about making the law makers who created the monster and opened the door to easy abuse, pay?


12 posted on 05/15/2011 12:05:18 PM PDT by George from New England (Escaped CT in 2006, now living north of Tampa)
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To: pnh102

“Teaching just is not a job for men anymore. “

Most environments where women, feminists and liberals rule are not safe places for men to work anymore.


13 posted on 05/15/2011 12:06:59 PM PDT by George from New England (Escaped CT in 2006, now living north of Tampa)
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To: rawhide

The TSA actually is allowed to grope 12 year old girls.


14 posted on 05/15/2011 12:07:24 PM PDT by culpeper (He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people,)
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To: troy McClure

better yet, she should have to pay the $125,000.
Why should state taxpayers pay for HER crime?
(set up like a student loan, so it can’t be removed by bankruptcy).
...and while i don’t support making her parents liable, i do note that many liberals want to punish parents, even to removing their tax deduction for simply having an “obese” child. or threatening to punish parents with jail for students being truant.
if sex crimes are severely punished as they should be, then false accusations of them should be equally punished. a destroyed life is a destroyed life.
and there are innocent men, with families, sitting in jail... who speaks for them?


15 posted on 05/15/2011 12:07:48 PM PDT by Elendur
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To: rawhide

Hooray for the jury!

Has the girl been expelled?


16 posted on 05/15/2011 12:07:51 PM PDT by bvw
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To: Scotsman will be Free

If my child ever accused me of such a crime and CPS came to investigate, my first action would be to give them an empty suitcase and tell them to go fill it with her clothes.


17 posted on 05/15/2011 12:11:12 PM PDT by Jonty30
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To: rawhide

Female circumcision:

It’s not just for moslems anymore.


18 posted on 05/15/2011 12:11:34 PM PDT by papertyger
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To: Elendur

I’d like to add to that list the prosecutor as well. WTF is he doing prosecuting people with no evidence? This guy is another Nifong.


19 posted on 05/15/2011 12:11:45 PM PDT by pnh102 (Regarding liberalism, always attribute to malice what you think can be explained by stupidity. - Me)
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To: rawhide

It happens more than we think too. Years ago a family firend happened to have car troubel on the wrong road. A 14 yo gilr who lived close by told her Mother she had been raped by a stranger and he ended up arrested and went through several years of h*ll because of this girls lies. When it finally went to trial his lawyer was ab;e to get her to breakdown and admit she lied. Guess she had slept with her boyfriend and was afriad of what migth happen if she got pregnant so made up a lie just incase. The family lost everything because everyone believed the young girl. They ended up with thousands of dollars in legal fees and the girl walked away scot free....just doesn’t seem fair that that could happen that way but it does.


20 posted on 05/15/2011 12:11:59 PM PDT by chris_bdba
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To: rawhide

On a similar note, I have just been through my companies’ “Sexual Harassment Training Class”. The course is total BS but I understand completely why my company does it. We were taught never to put yourself into any position where you “might be vulnerable to being accused” of sexual harassment. This is very frightening. If has turned us into Robots in the work environment. At lunch the other we were discussing the finding of porno in the material confiscated when the Seals took out Bin Laden. This was in the company cafeteria. We were discussing just what this meant in light of Islam’s treatment of women. When a woman came to sit at our table, I changed the topic of conversation. Just broaching this topic should be seen as sexual harassment. This is madness I know as I watched this topic on a number of TV and radio shows. But that shows where we are at.


21 posted on 05/15/2011 12:12:47 PM PDT by truthguy (Good intentions are not enough.)
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To: Scotsman will be Free

“Child Protective Services in the state of Washington has a simple philosophy. If a child states that his parents are abusive he is telling the truth. If the child refuses to accuse his parents he has been intimidated, coerced or brainwashed by the parents. If the child accuses a CPS worker or school “counselor” of misdeeds they are liars.”

It’s a very tough problem. The flip side is that child abuse does occur, and often abused children defend their parents (a sort of Stockholm syndrome).


22 posted on 05/15/2011 12:14:22 PM PDT by pieceofthepuzzle
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To: rawhide

I think this happens more than it is reported. From what I gather, many allegations are left without action beyond the initial investigation. The problem of course is the accused will always have this hanging over him from the gossip that follows.


23 posted on 05/15/2011 12:15:27 PM PDT by Mouton (Voting is an opiate of the electorate. Nothing changes no matter who wins..)
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To: pieceofthepuzzle

The main problem is that CPS is staffed with liberal social workers who couldn’t investigate their way out of a wet paper bag and who have a liberal’s view of what child abuse is.


24 posted on 05/15/2011 12:19:36 PM PDT by Scotsman will be Free (11C - Indirect fire, infantry - High angle hell - We will bring you, FIRE)
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To: Elendur

We raised a special needs child who ended up with a judgment against her for something she did as a juvenile. The state tried to convince us that we had to pay. We did not and resisted. Unless someone can show me that these parents were directly culpable for her actions, I don’t believe that they should be held financially responsible. The cops who indicted him without a better investigation should be responsible.


25 posted on 05/15/2011 12:21:42 PM PDT by Mercat (BHO, Ditherer in Chief)
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To: George from New England

That too is fine with me, providing they pay out of their own pockets, and don’t bilk taxpayers who are already paying for lousy legislation.


26 posted on 05/15/2011 12:25:05 PM PDT by pallis
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To: pnh102
Teaching just is not a job for men anymore.

This is all part of the leftist, Feminist agenda to destroy men and marriage, as well as families.

The massive influx of female teachers, and their usual leftist teachings, are the point of the spear in the destruction of our free society by indoctrinating children to be subservient to the government and all things PC.

27 posted on 05/15/2011 12:26:03 PM PDT by OldMissileer (Atlas, Titan, Minuteman, PK. Winners of the Cold War)
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To: truthguy
Went to the same training before I retired, it was a hoot. The Union Guys destroyed the two cute Trainers sent out by corporate. I had a case of walking pneumonia and had to walk away to keep from chocking to death from laughing.
28 posted on 05/15/2011 12:27:45 PM PDT by Little Bill (Sorry)
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To: Scotsman will be Free
The main problem is that CPS is staffed with liberal social workers who couldn’t investigate their way out of a wet paper bag and who have a liberal’s view of what child abuse is.

That's a big part of the problem. And the other big part is these damn District Attorneys who are out to make a name for themselves. Most of these people know full well that many of those accused are completely innocent but proceed with the case regardless. It doesn't seem to matter to these people that the case is bogus and that lives will be destroyed. If you question them on this, they will say they are just doing their job.

Duke Lacrosse is a good example of this. At least in this case, those accused were offered compensation. The District Attorney who pursued this case name should be make public and they should receive the scorn of the public. I'll wager that in this DA's heart of hearts, he/she (and I'll bet it's a she) knew this guy was totally innocent.
29 posted on 05/15/2011 12:29:47 PM PDT by truthguy (Good intentions are not enough.)
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To: culpeper

Andthe get paid and paid well while doing it.


30 posted on 05/15/2011 12:30:01 PM PDT by sport
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To: rawhide

I don’t understand why any male would want to become a teacher. And here’s Exhibit A.


31 posted on 05/15/2011 12:34:09 PM PDT by OldPossum
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To: Clintons Are White Trash

Same thing happened to a friend of mine. the guy was 65 y/o impotent, diabetic, and a clean record for over 35 years.

He went to court, jail, etc, and was finally cleared on appeal after a tape surfaced later on showing he was clearly innocent. His life was ruined.


32 posted on 05/15/2011 12:37:04 PM PDT by GlockThe Vote (F U B O ! ! !)
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To: rawhide

That 12 year old girl was FULLY aware of what the consequences would be.

Now she should pay hers.


33 posted on 05/15/2011 12:37:04 PM PDT by chesley (Eat what you want, and die like a man.)
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To: rawhide

Why can’t he file suit against this little slut and her parents for the amount of the legal fees?


34 posted on 05/15/2011 12:38:14 PM PDT by Bloody Sam Roberts (A "Moderate Muslim"? Nothing more than a Muslim Extremist who has run out of ammo.)
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To: rawhide

You can put me on the falsely accused list. I never met the child in question, but the child was well known by my parents and siblings. Fortunately for me I was out for the country for an extended time that including the time of the accusation, and it only took a quick look at my passport by the sheriff sent to investigate to clear me. My brother was not as lucky, and spent quite a bit of time trying to get clear of accusactions by the same girl.


35 posted on 05/15/2011 12:38:58 PM PDT by T. P. Pole
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To: pieceofthepuzzle

Still, if the poliice investigators cannot gather corroborating evidence, they shoud have no case.


36 posted on 05/15/2011 12:40:41 PM PDT by chesley (Eat what you want, and die like a man.)
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To: pallis

The girl and her family should be made to pay every penny this has cost him,

In America, parents, although they have produced them, are no longer responsible for their offspring. Responsibility for their offspring is reassigned to the public and its servants, e.g. teachers. Children are only to serve the parents,' primarily the mothers,' ego's. Blame and the Refusal of Responsibility are the sacred foundation of the LEFT and its Lawyers.

Hence we must, as Hillary along with Karl Marx and a whole lot of conditioned world citizens advocate, re-allocate all responsibility to the "village." It is after all "for the children."

37 posted on 05/15/2011 12:44:13 PM PDT by jnsun (The Left: the need to manipulate others because of nothing productive to offer.)
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To: Carley

“There is no way to protect yourself from this type of charge.”

Yes there is. If you work with children, work only in a location where you are supervised or visible by other adults the entire time. Spend only a minute or two in the restroom. Period.

This works for the gym where my kids practice. They do not take the little one’s to the bathroom - the parent must be present to do so. All coaches are observable 100% of the time, even in their break room. Since this is policy, there can’t be abuse. If a kid said someone took him alone it would be impossible.


38 posted on 05/15/2011 12:50:40 PM PDT by Yaelle
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To: rawhide

Prisons are filled with such innocent men.


39 posted on 05/15/2011 12:54:31 PM PDT by FormerACLUmember (When the past no longer illuminates the future, the spirit walks in darkness.)
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To: pnh102

But But a child molestation conviction look’s sooo good when running for higher office.
We as a nation may look our noses down at other corrupt governments but let me tell you,we’re not so different. Cases brought up like this one are absolutely evidence of corruption on the governments part. Corruption isn’t just about money changing hand’s after all.


40 posted on 05/15/2011 1:01:42 PM PDT by wiggen (The teacher card. When the racism card just won't work.)
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To: rawhide
He was offered $60,000 towards his legal fees – less than half of the final bill – as a full settlement.

just out of curiosity, where is his teachers union? You'd think this would be an important benefit, a far better use of dues than political contributions.

41 posted on 05/15/2011 1:02:53 PM PDT by NonValueAdded (I asked the bartender for a bin Ladin, she said 'what's that? I said 'two shots then a splash.')
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To: jnsun

“...Hillary along with Karl Marx and a whole lot of conditioned world citizens advocate, re-allocate all responsibility to the “village.”...”

Hey, I had a freeper call me an apologist for public schools because I argued that parents are responsible for the educations, or lack thereof of their children. People of all persuasions like to play the blame game. Schools ruin our children, or television, the internet, or the neighbors, our culture, our churches, malls, Walmarts, too much, too little, but it is never the parents who are responsible for kids who fail academically, morally, emotionally or socially. I say home school. Let others play these games.


42 posted on 05/15/2011 1:03:14 PM PDT by pallis
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To: rawhide
My wife and I were coming home from Ocean City NJ one night. We stopped at a rest stop on the Parkway-it was pretty late at night and we saw a small child wandering around with no parent in sight-in a rest stop on the Parkway. My first instinct was to help the little tyke find his mom but I did not dare go near him. We kept an eye on him from a distance until his dodo of a mom came to get him.

Sad. Very, sad.

43 posted on 05/15/2011 1:05:06 PM PDT by MattinNJ (Will a hero rise in 2012?)
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To: chesley; Scotsman will be Free

Agree with both of you.


44 posted on 05/15/2011 1:09:16 PM PDT by pieceofthepuzzle
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To: NonValueAdded
just out of curiosity, where is his teachers union? You'd think this would be an important benefit, a far better use of dues than political contributions.

He teaches in Virginia, a Right to Work state. He may not be a member of a union since we teachers are not required to be in one.

I'm not in a union either, but stories like this make me rethink my decision all the time. Losing your house is a pretty big risk. I just try to be careful to never, EVER be alone with a child and never, EVER touch one, even a pat on the back to say 'good job' is completely out of the question.

45 posted on 05/15/2011 1:11:06 PM PDT by SoftballMominVA
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To: rawhide
This was my biggest nightmare when raising my children and the main reason why I never volunteered to be scout leader, Little League coach or anything similar during those times, even though I would have liked to have done so. I would just drop my kids off at those activities and pick them up later when they were over. Now that my kids are grown up, I want nothing further to do with kids and I stay away from them. (Guess I'll make an exception for any grandkids.)

All it takes is for one of these kids to accuse me of something I didn't do (to get back at me for some slight) and my life is immediately destroyed forever like this guy's was. Many kids realize they have this kind of power as well and that is why so many adults are afraid to discipline children or hold them accountable for anything.

The famous Fells Acre case occurred only a few miles from my home. In that case, an entire family was destroyed on the basis of accusations that were never proven. The Amiraults were convicted in court with no physical evidence whatsoever because any allegation of child abuse brings out the "witch hunt" factor in our society. They were all quietly released from prison many years after their innocence became obvious. This delay was on account of the fact that nobody involved in the original trial wanted to admit they made such a horrible mistake and no politician had the guts to vouch for their pardon.

46 posted on 05/15/2011 1:15:31 PM PDT by SamAdams76 (I am 64 days from outliving Wendy O Williams (of The Plasmatics))
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To: rawhide
I've seen something similar happen to someone close to me. He was innocent of course, but his name was dragged through the mud, he had to eat a whole bunch of legal fees, and never got as much as an apology for the false accusation.

It's a pretty risk-free way to eff with a man in a very serious way.

47 posted on 05/15/2011 1:25:44 PM PDT by thecabal (The Golden Rule: He who has the gold, makes the rules.)
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To: truthguy
It (sexual harassment education) has turned us into Robots in the work environment.

Absolutely the truth. Last summer, I went to a weekend barbeque with some of the guys at work. Guys only. We roasted a pig and everything. Had a blast. We got to know more about each other in that few hours than in years of working together. We found out that we actually had personalities and knew how to have a good time. Come Monday morning, we went right back to being the robots that we are forced to be, lest some female co-worker file an HR complaint against us. It doesn't have to even be sexual. One co-worker had an HR complaint against him (filed by a woman) because he slammed his office door. The complaint was that he was creating an "hostile" work environment.

Now I'm sure that the majority of women employees just want to fit in with the culture and aren't interested in filing gratuitous HR complaints. But as a man, you can't take any women co-worker for granted. TRUST NO ONE!

48 posted on 05/15/2011 1:28:23 PM PDT by SamAdams76 (I am 64 days from outliving Wendy O Williams (of The Plasmatics))
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To: George from New England
Teaching just is not a job for men anymore.

Men are a vanishing breed in primary education. However there are just as many "sexual abuse" charges made against women by students of either sex, or parents which don't hold up on subsequent investigation. I'm convinced that kids get the idea from TV and use it as a hammer when they don't get their way from an "authority figure". Parents on the other hand believe their kids over anyone else and any accusation is taken at face value.

Regards,
GtG

49 posted on 05/15/2011 1:33:14 PM PDT by Gandalf_The_Gray (I live in my own little world, I like it 'cuz they know me here.)
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To: Scotsman will be Free
Washington state was notorious for malicious prosecutions of highly questionable and unsubstantiated allegations all through the 80's and 90's. Books have been written about some of the more egregious cases.

Hopefully sanity will be restored.

50 posted on 05/15/2011 1:41:44 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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